Saving money is the cornerstone of my mother’s success. When we were young, my mother sewed all our school uniforms and shorts for casual wear. It was not because she was stingy but rather she knew she could save much money by doing it herself.

Saving money does not mean putting money into the bank account and accumulating money to earn interest. Saving money means to cut down on unnecessary expense and spending; cut corners and trim expenditure. Remember the good advice, “A penny saved is a penny earned.”

My father is also an advocate of this good habit. He used to borrow books to read instead of buying new ones. During his university days, he would borrow books unused by graduates. Although my father is widely read, he owns only a few books today.

When I was a boy, our family seldom ate out to save money. As a result, my mother became a very good cook. Anything we liked to eat at the kopitiam (coffee shop), she would attempt to make it at home. Till today, she is famous for her dishes such as Penang loh bak, lam mee, kay kapitan, jawa mee and jiew hu char. These are popular dishes from Penang and every Chinese New Year, friends and relatives get to enjoy her cooking.

“If you cannot save money, then the seeds of greatness are not in you.”
W. Clemement Stone
(Insurance magnate)

Young people who do not cook at home are surprised at how much they spend on meals. A young executive in her 20’s could spend about RM1000.00 a month on meals and drinks if she does not cook at home. If she ate most of her meals at home, she could save about RM600.00 every month! That turns out to RM7,200.00 a year! No wonder a young lady friend of mine lamented, “I need to get a boyfriend to help pay for things!” She was spending faster than she could earn!

Today, we live in an “instant world.” Everything about it is, “Now, now, now!” If you want something, you are told to use your credit card. “Just use your credit card!” I have heard friends suggest.

The credit card provides instant buying power. The problem is, not many people understand the dangers of over charging their credit card. It is easy to get into debt but it is very, very difficult to get out of it. More about this subject later.

The best advice about shopping with a credit card is to just leave the credit card at home when you go out shopping. This will stop you from accidentally over spending!

(Get your copy of “Secrets of how My Mother became a Millionaire” book available at MPH bookstores nationwide and other good bookstores to read more)


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